Why is it that projects like Gentoo only seem to think about projects that are needed / wanted when Google Summer of Code comes around? Surely this is something which should be ongoing!
Many of the projects on the Gentoo GSoC 2009 Ideas wiki page are probably things which devs have known needed doing for a while. But it’s only when GSoC comes around that these are put down in writing and start to become the formulation for a project.
I think that if this sort of thing happened on a continual basis, it might help to bring more developers to Gentoo and focus the efforts of both existing and potential developers / contributors.
I would suggest that, for Gentoo, the PR project maintains such a list on an ongoing basis (anyone would be able to edit the list, but PR would keep it tidy and ensure projects are updated (eg. removed when done)). The newsletter could feature one of these tasks each issue, with information from the task proposer on exactly what they forsee the project achieving.
There should be no upper or lower limits to the tasks. It could be as small as updating and testing a particular package or a major project (eg. resurrecting Gentoo/BSD).